Andrew Yang: Obama missed opportunity to restructure economy after financial crisis

Andrew Yang: Obama missed opportunity to restructure economy after financial crisis
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Democratic presidential candidate Andrew YangAndrew YangAndrew Yang's wife, Evelyn Yang, calls for 'big structural change' at 4th annual Women's March DNC announces new criteria for New Hampshire debate Poll: Sanders holds 5-point lead over Buttigieg in New Hampshire MORE said in an interview with The Hill on Friday that former President Obama missed an opportunity to restructure the economy so that it better benefits average Americans after the 2008 financial crisis. 

Yang argued that the Obama administration focused instead on reviving banks, echoing a criticism hurled by some Democrats and Republicans that the government opted to bail out banks instead of working class Americans.

"I think the biggest missed opportunity was in the wake of the financial crisis, where we printed $4 trillion for the Wall Street banks," Yang said. "And there was a massive opportunity to help restructure our economy in ways that worked for the average American to a higher degree. That, to me, was the biggest missed opportunity." 

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Yang argued that more Americans could have stayed in their homes had the administration taken other steps such as forgiving more mortgage and consumer debt. 

However, the Democratic candidate also moderated his criticism, noting the administration acted with well-meaning intentions in the wake of the crisis. 

"I don't begrudge any one decision you make in a crisis, because the fact is, the economy was at a precipice, and people just did what they thought was right to pull us back from the edge," he said. "But I think there was a missed opportunity there. And I think, in many ways, I'm we're still recovering." 

Obama remains widely popular among Democratic voters, but his record has come under scrutiny from more progressive members of the party, who have called him out for not including a public option in his Affordable Care Act or for the number of deportations under his administration.